Budget laptop for light-moderate gaming, pre 2010

MDBro

Estimable
May 24, 2014
2
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4,510
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This is a lot to read, but I wanted to make sure I was as thorough with this question as possible.

My father had a Gateway p7811fx that he got for a good price on ebay last year. Unfortunately there was a spill and no matter what we could not get it fixed. Here I am looking for a replacement, or something somewhat comparable or decent to it (but at my budget I think that would be hard).

I've looked high and low, and this is why I am coming to you guys here. I'm down between these choices, and I'll show you what I've found as well.

I'm looking for a laptop for my father that he can easily do web surfing and netflix with, as well as light to moderate gaming. At least medium-high pre 2010 games.

My budget is $400. Warranty is highly preferred.

These are the laptops in question:

HP - TouchSmart 15.6" Touch-Screen Laptop - 4GB Memory - 750GB Hard Drive - Sparkling Black
@ Best Buy for $379.99, or non touchscreen for $360.

Specs:
Processor: i3-3130M, 3MB L3 Cache @ 2.6GHZ (2 Cores)
RAM: 4GB DDR3L, apparently non-expandable.
Graphics: Intel HD 4000
CPU Benchmark: 3477, according to cpubenchmark.net

http://www.bestbuy.com/site/hp-touchsmart-15-6-touch-screen-laptop-4gb-memory-750gb-hard-drive-sparkling-black/5153008.p?id=1219112461695&skuId=5153008&st=HP%20LAPTOP%20SPARKLING%20BLACK&cp=1&lp=1

http://www.cpubenchmark.net/cpu.php?cpu=Intel+Core+i3-3130M+%40+2.60GHz&id=1829

I wouldn't be able to get any accidental protection warranty with this.

Personal Thoughts: This w/ or w/o touchscreen sounds like the best bet, but it does bug that I won't be able to get a warranty.
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HP Black Licorice 15.6" 15-g029wm Laptop PC with AMD A4-5000 Quad-Core Accelerated Processor, 4GB Memory, 500GB Hard Drive and Windows 8.1
@ Walmart for $328

Specs:
Processor: 1.5GHZ Quad-Core Accelarated, 2MB L2 Cache
RAM: 4GB DDR3 SDRAM, I couldn't find out if it was expandable
Graphics: AMD Radeon HD 8330
CPU Benchmark: 1909

I can get a warranty with this for $51 w/ 2 year accidental

http://shop.amd.com/us/Manufacturer/HP/Detail/Notebook/F9H61UA#Details

http://www.cpubenchmark.net/cpu.php?cpu=AMD+A4-5000+APU&id=2005

Personal Thoughts: It looks promising, but I think the processor is weak for a quad core, and can cause frequent lag or stutters.
____________________________________________________________
Toshiba Satin Black 15.6" Satellite C55-A5126 Laptop PC with Intel 2020M Pentium Processor, 4GB Memory, 500GB Hard Drive and Windows 8.1
@ Walmart for $348

Specs:
Processor 2.4GHZ, 2MB Cache (2 Cores)
RAM 4GB DDR3, Expandable to 16GB
Graphics Intel HD Graphics w/ Shared
CPU Benchmark 2292

http://www.walmart.com/ip/Toshiba-Satin-Black-15.6-Satellite-C55-A5126-Laptop-PC-with-Intel-2020M-Pentium-Processor-4GB-Memory-500GB-Hard-Drive-and-Windows-8.1/34174283

http://www.cpubenchmark.net/cpu.php?cpu=Intel+Pentium+2020M+%40+2.40GHz&id=1855

Personal Thoughts: I like this, but I am just unsure if it can handle the pre 2010 games. I may be asking too much of it too. 16GB of expandable ram sounds great though! I can get a warranty with this.
____________________________________________________________
Lenovo IdeaPad G510s 15.6-Inch Touchscreen Laptop (59406553) Black
@ Amazon for $379.99, New

Specs:
Processor Intel Pentium Dual-Core 3550M 2.3 GHz Processor
RAM: 4GB DDR3, unsure if Expandable
Graphics Intel HD Graphics
CPU Benchmark 2589
Cannot afford warranty

http://www.amazon.com/Lenovo-IdeaPad-15-6-Inch-Touchscreen-59406553/dp/B00HIYA3SK/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1400966573&sr=8-2&keywords=lenovo+laptop

http://www.cpubenchmark.net/cpu.php?cpu=Intel+Pentium+3550M+%40+2.30GHz&id=2175

Personal Thoughts I honestly love the Lenovo brand, I think they are reliable according to prior experience with them. It seems like an okay compromise.
___________________________________________________________
Lenovo ThinkPad Edge E545 20B20011US 15.6-Inch Laptop
@ Amazon for $408

Specs:
Processor AMD A6-5350M 2.9GHZ up to 3.50GHz w/AMD Turbo Core tech, 1MB L2 Cache
RAM 4GB, expandable to 16GB
Graphics AMD Radeon HD 8450G
CPU Benchmark 2021

http://www.amazon.com/Lenovo-ThinkPad-20B20011US-15-6-Inch-Laptop/dp/B00FU83YWS/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1400968632&sr=8-1&keywords=lenovo+laptop

http://www.cpubenchmark.net/cpu.php?cpu=AMD+A6-5350M+APU&id=1987

Personal Thoughts: I would jump on this in a heartbeat if I was assured that this would meet my expectations. It has a spill resistant keyboard, its expandable to 16GB, and it has a decent processor + graphics. The downside is no warranty. They do have it refurbished for $379 w/ the seller claiming to be authorized, along with the manufacturers 1 year warranty.
_____________________________________________________________

There is this Del Inspirion 15 w/ a Celeron Dual Core 1.4GHZ CPU for $250, but after reading about Celeron's and the CPU Marks, I don't know i it's worth considering.
http://www.dell.com/us/p/inspiron-15-3521/pd?oc=FNDNC2132s&dgc=CJ&cid=24471&lid=561081&acd=10550055-552179-VTRFYnp3b0JDak1BQUEteWFDWUFBQUJC
________________________________________________

My personal experience with electronics is that I do not buy warranties. I am using an Asus 1201n w/ an 1.6 Atom dual core + Nvidia Ion and it has lasted me 4 years, no hardware problems. I also purchase an Acer a100 tablet refurbished with no warranty, still works like a charm.

I'm looking for quality and reliability, I've heard horror stories with HP and Toshiba, which is why I'm considering those two Lenovo's.

I'm confident all can email, browse, and stream videos just fine. My dad just wants to game (he won't have the time to, but I want to give him the ability to at least).

My main question is, to save some cash and have some peace of mind within my budget, do you think that the lower priced laptops will run pre 2010 games as well as the higher priced ones? You can probably tell by now I want accidental protection, but realistically I think it should be fine w/o it.

I am open to any suggestions.

If you have taken the time to read through all this, I highly appreciate and respect the time and effort you have given me.
 

MDBro

Estimable
May 24, 2014
2
0
4,510
0
I decided to purchase the Lenovo Thinkpad Edge E545 20B20011US
This is why:

1. Memory is expandable to 16GB (ideal for games)
2. Has a nice processor w/ integrated graphics card
3. Anti-Glare Screen
4. Lenovo Brand
5. Spill Resistant Keyboard (Just in case it happens again!)
6. Thinkvantage Harddrive Protection
7. Windows 7 w/ Optional Windows 8
8. I had enough points on Amazon to knock down $26.
9. I can buy Square Trade within 30 days of new product purchase, so I can work hard for that.

I was able to look up reviews on the laptop, at least other configurations of it and see how the screen was, and how the processor/graphics performed. I feel like it will run really well with pre-2010 games. Realistically, he is not going to play a lot of games, mostly Netflix, browse cars, and email. However, I am comfortable knowing that I can get some PC games for him that will run smoothly. Plus, if it doesn't meet my expectations, I can always return it and go back to the drawing board!

I thought I'd share why I made the decision I made. Thanks again for your time and consideration (whoever has read these novels of posts!) to read this. I'll keep you posted!
 
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